Fordism and McDonaldization are important movements to the workplace environment, as it has shown the control of society. To understand the importance of Fordism and McDonaldization it is of vital importance that I analyse the history and origins of these movements, beginning with Max Weber’s theory of rationalization. Followed by Fordism and a look into the impact it has had on the worker’s conditions, I will then explore Mcdonaldisation and how the four dimensions of McDonaldization influence the workers.
In order to gain a deeper understanding of McDonaldization one must first explore sociologist Max Weber’s theory on rationalization, which is one of his most useful concepts in this context (Kendall, 2007). According to Ritzer, (Ritzer 1995: 21, cited in Kendall, 2007, pg. 19) rationalization is “the process in which the modern world has come to be increasingly dominated by structures devoted to efficiency, calculability, predictability, and technological control”. He (1996) also goes on to say that Weber described how a certain time period became increasingly rational by the domination of these four structures. Ritzer (1996) continues to say that Weber also looked at why society was failing to rationalize generally in everyday life. Alongside rationalization Fordism can be linked to Weber’s theory in relation to the control from nonhuman technologies. Industrialist Henry Ford is a well-known pioneer from over a century ago, becoming one of the wealthiest people in the world. Ford earned his riches by establishing the Ford Motor Company and designing his first auto plant for the sole purpose of manufacturing just one product; the Model T Ford car (Ritzer, 1996). Ford is mainly known for altering the concept of the assembly line because he wanted to save time, energy, and money by changing how his factories were run. This way he could sell more cars and increase his workers wages so they could afford to purchase the product; this ultimately brought a...
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